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August 16, 2023

Software Testing — Test Plan

The best time to establish protocols with your clients is when you onboard them.


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Planning the tests is the first step in every Software Testing Life Cycle (STLC). No matter the product or project in issue, this article will walk through every step of the planning process and highlight everything required to establish result-oriented software tests.

Test Plan

A test plan is a document that contains information on the upcoming test activities carried out in a project, according to the software testing industry. A test plan often contains information about the testing methodology, the scope of the tests, the resources needed, and an estimated timeframe for all the tasks included in a testing project.

According to the ISTQB definition, a test plan is a document that outlines the purpose, strategy, available tools, and timetable for the activities that will be tested.

The plan allows us to calculate the amount of effort required to validate the quality of the application under test. The test manager carefully monitors and controls every aspect of the test plan to ensure that software testing activities are carried out according to a defined methodology.

Importance of Test Plan

I) They assist others outside of the QA teams (developers, business managers, and customer-facing teams) in understanding how the website or app will be tested.

II) They provide QA engineers with a defined roadmap for conducting testing operations.

III) They go into detail into things like test scope, test estimation, strategy, and other things. It is simpler for management employees to review and reuse this data when it is compiled into a single document.

What Makes a Test Plan?


Describes the goals of the specific project. It also describes the user scenarios that will be used in tests. If necessary, the scope can identify which situations or issues the project will not address.


Provides information about the start and due dates for testers’ results.
Specifies which tester will work on which test in the resource allocation.


Provides information about the nature, setup, and accessibility of the test environment.


Describes the tools that should be used for testing, reporting bugs, and other pertinent tasks.

Defect Management:

Specifies how defects will be reported, who will receive them, and what information must be provided with each bug report. Should bugs be reported with images, text logs, or videos showing where they appear in the code, for instance?

Risk management :

Describes potential dangers that could arise during software testing as well as potential risks that could affect the product itself if it is published prematurely.

Exit Parameters:

Specifies when testing must end. This section outlines the anticipated outcomes of the QA activities, providing testers with a standard against which to measure actual outcomes.

A test plan: How do I make one?

The following actions are required while creating a test plan:

  1. Product Evaluation
  2. Creating a Test Plan
  3. Specifying Goals
  4. Plan to establish test criteria
  5. Planning for Resource Allocation
  6. Establishing a Test Environment
  7. Establish the estimation and test schedule.
  8. Decide on test deliverables.

Product Evaluation:

Begin by knowing more about the product being tested, the customer, and similar product end-users. This stage should ideally concentrate on responding to the following queries:

  • Who will make use of the item?
  • What is the primary goal of this item?
  • How does the item function?
  • What are the hardware and software requirements?
  • Follow these steps during this phase:
  1. Consult with customers, designers, and developers.
  2. Look over the project and product documentation.
  3. Walk through the product

Creating a Test Plan:

The test manager creates the test strategy document, which includes the following definitions:

  • Project goals and strategies for achieving them.
  • The cost and effort associated with testing.

More specifically, the document must detail out:

  • Scope of Testing
  • Type of Testing
  • Risks and Issues
  • Test Logistics

Specifying Goals:

The purposes and anticipated outcomes of test execution are set forth in this phase. The following objects are required because any testing aims to find as many flaws as possible:

  • A list of all software features that need to be evaluated, including functionality, GUI, and performance requirements.
  • The benchmark or desirable outcome for each area of the software that needs testing.
  • This will serve as the standard against which all real results will be measured.

Plan to establish test criteria:

Test criteria are the standards or guidelines that direct all operations inside a testing project. The two primary test requirements are:

  • Suspension Criteria: Defines the criteria for suspending all tests. For instance, if the QA team discovers that 50% of all test cases have failed, all testing is halted until the developers fix all of the defects that have already been found.
  • Exit Criteria: Specifies the standards for when a project or test phase has been successfully completed. Before going on to the following stage of development, the exit criteria, which are the anticipated outcomes of tests, must be satisfied. For example, before a particular feature or section of the software can be judged ready for public usage, 80% of all test cases must be rated successful.

Planning for Resource Allocation:

The resources needed to complete the project are thoroughly broken down at this phase. Resources include manpower, tools, and all other infrastructure needed for precise and thorough testing.

This section of the test plan specifies the quantity of resources (testers and equipment) needed for the project. This aids test managers in creating an accurate plan and estimate for the project.

Establishing a Test Environment:

A testing environment is a configuration of hardware and software where the testing team will run test cases. The test environment includes physical settings, such as servers and front end running environments, as well as actual business and user environments.

Actual devices, installed with real browsers and operating systems, are unbeatable as test environments, whether for manual or automation testing. Avoid compromising your test results with emulators or simulators.

Establish the estimation and test schedule:

Divide the project into smaller jobs and allot the time and effort needed for each to get a test estimate.

Then, plan your work so that you can finish these activities on time and with the right level of effort.
Nevertheless, the schedule does need input from other angles:

  • Project deadlines, the number of working days, and the daily resource availability.
  • Project-related risks that have already been assessed at an earlier stage.

Decide on test deliverables:

A list of documents, resources, and other items known as test deliverables must be developed, made available, and kept up to date in order to enable testing operations throughout a project.

The deliverables needed before, during, and after testing are all distinct.

Deliverables needed before testing

Documentation regarding

  • Test Plan
  • Test Design

Deliverables needed during testing

Documentation regarding

  • Test Scripts
  • Simulators or Emulators
  • Test Data
  • Error and execution logs

Deliverables needed after testing

Documentation regarding

  • Test Results
  • Defect Reports
  • Release Notes

The foundation of each software testing project is the test plan. Without a comprehensive and well-crafted plan, QAs are certain to become confused with hazy, ambiguous timelines. This excessively slows down results and delays release cycles, preventing quick and accurate testing.

This article’s suggestions are intended to assist testers and QA specialists in creating a test plan that facilitates the execution of tests in a cleaner, more efficient, and result-oriented manner.

August 16, 2023
min read
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